Alhaji (Dr) Seidu Peligah, Principal of Tamale Polytechnic has expressed concern about the low enrolment of students, especially women to offer courses in engineering and science in Polytechnics in the country. He noted that although the Polytechnics were established to train practically oriented men and women to feed the middle manpower needs of the country, they had geared towards Business courses and the Arts.
Alhaji Peligah was addressing the 13th Matriculation of Tamale Polytechnic in Tamale last Saturday. Tamale Polytechnic received 1,361 applications for admission into various programmes and out of these 900 students made up of 623 men and 177 women were admitted.
Out of the 46 students admitted for statistics course 45 were men and a woman, for building technology out of 51 students 49 were men and two women while 31 students admitted for mechanical engineering had 30 men and a woman.
Twenty-five men were admitted for Agricultural Engineering programme, and in the traditionally women dominated departments there were some improvement. In the marketing programme out of 154 students admitted 126 were men and 28 women, Hotel Catering and Institutional Management out of the 26 students admitted only three were men, for Secretaryship and Management out of the 87 students admitted 45 were men and 42 women.
Out of the 480 students who offered accountancy programme 400 were men and 80 women. Alhaji Peligah said authorities of Polytechnics were determined to admit many students but constrained by the limited number of facilities to train the students effectively and efficiently.
He urged the students to refrain from examination malpractices and other social vices on campus.
Mr Mohammed Amin Adam, Tamale Metropolitan Chief Executive urged authorities of Polytechnics to eschew the 'Wait and See' attitude and be bold to undertake programmes that would meet all levels of manpower requirements affecting the country's development.
He regretted that although Polytechnics had improved infrastructure and other academic facilities than most of the private universities they were losing their rightful positions to these private universities in terms of levels of learning.
Mr Adam called on authorities of Polytechnics in northern Ghana to be more proactive and purposeful in identifying potentials of the three regions and train the manpower capable of turning those potentials to accelerate growth and development.
He pointed out that the establishment of a Northern Development Fund by government with the 25,000,000 Ghana cedis seed money was not another form of 'window dressing' and urged the people to mobilise their energies and ideas to actively participate in the development process undertaken by the Fund.
'Our educational institutions such as the Polytechnics should as a matter of urgency provide useful and innovative inputs to help in determining the development priorities of our regions and ensure targeted interventions that would have multiplier effects, during the implementation stages of the Fund,' he added.